Advancing Industry Transformation
The purpose of the Foundation for a Smoke-Free World is to improve global health by ending smoking in this generation. Our task is urgent. More than a billion people still smoke worldwide, and more than seven million global deaths are attributed to tobacco use each year.
The Foundation’s Industry Transformation strategy aims to attain transformation of the global tobacco industry and nicotine ecosystem in support of the overarching purpose – in a manner that is compatible with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) framework. The tobacco industry sells a deadly product – cigarettes. Some consumers are rejecting that product, but the transformation of the tobacco industry can provide an enormous and crucial acceleration to the process of eliminating combustible tobacco. The Foundation believes that the appropriate way to influence industry is indirectly through strategic partnerships. In particular, we believe the investor community is a powerful, yet mainly underutilized, lever with which to influence company management.
The Foundation will develop and implement the Smoke-Free Index® as a means to critically evaluate tobacco industry progress and assess any actions taken to undermine progress toward a smoke-free world. The Foundation intends to complement WHO FCTC efforts by further examining the necessary future transformation of the tobacco industry and nicotine ecosystem, as well as by considering ways to change the core products that are responsible for preventable premature deaths and numerous diseases. To accomplish this undertaking successfully, we must and will engage all stakeholders with the material ability to effect change for the good. We will report all those who impede progress in fair, verifiable, and systematic ways. We will encourage the development of metrics that investors and policy makers understand, value, and utilize.
The Foundation believes that innovation and consumer-driven demand are part of the solution, in addition to policy prescriptions. The record shows that implementation of policy strategies alone is not achieving the degree and speed in the reduction of the prevalence of cigarette smoking that is desired – and witnessed, for example, in certain countries such as Japan and South Korea. The Foundation believes now is time to bring all forces together to achieve a smoke-free world.